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CALLIGRAPHY // The best materials to learn calligraphy

by Judith Joosten 14 Jul 2017

Do you want to start with modern calligraphy ? Then there is a good chance that you will become short of breath when you see the range of different materials on offer! I don't blame you! Which pen does what now, and what is it with all those different types of ink? So before you can start with calligraphy you could probably use some help? In this blog I explain to you which materials are best to purchase as a beginner.

To do calligraphy you need 4 different things: a pen holder, a pen/nib, ink and paper. In this blog I explain which 'essentials' you can best purchase as a beginner.

The calligraphy pen/nib
​Perhaps I can say that your nib will make the biggest difference to your calligraphy style. In my webshop I sell nibs with a pointed point, which are usually used for modern calligraphy. The pointed tip allows you to make thin upstrokes. If you apply some pressure to the pen during the downstrokes, you will get a thicker line. One pen is more flexible than the other, which explains the difference in the thick line downwards. The Flexible pens are more difficult to use.

The Nikko G is the perfect nib to start your calligraphy tour. With this calligraphy pen you can make super thin upstrokes and thicker downstrokes. It is a semi-flexible pen, so a nice nib to start the adventure with! Would you like to try out several pens right away? Then I recommend my set of 'Must Have Calligraphy Nibs'. This is an addition to the Nikko G. Make sure you have a pen holder with a metal attachment. All nibs fit in there :).

The Penholder
As you can see in my webshop, I have quite a few different pen holders in the shop! In combination with the Nikko G calligraphy nib you can actually choose anything. I recommend starting with a straight pen holder. The pen holder with a cork grip writes very comfortably, so I definitely recommend it!

Would you like to try out an Oblique holder? I already have an Oblique holder in the shop for €4.95. With this holder you have the calligraphy nib immediately

'So many colors and how many different black inks do you have?' Haha, yes, plenty of choice! If you are going to start, go for a jar of Sumi ink. This is a beautifully opaque black ink and flows easily from your pen. Do you want to try out colors right away? Then Ecoline is nice to experiment with.

Paper for calligraphy​
​You may be inclined to think: 'oh, I still had paper at home'. Not all paper is suitable for calligraphy. The ink can bleed, which means you won't get clean lines. Your ink is then completely sucked into the paper. Another annoyance is that you keep picking up some paper through the sharp point of your nib. Because some paper gets stuck in your nib, you get thick lines. Choose blank Triomphe paper or the Rhodia paper blocks. The Dotpads can give you guidelines. Do you use different guidelines? Then you can place it under the paper and you're good to go!

With these four ingredients you can get started! Hopefully it will help you on your way. Do you have any questions? Please put them in the comments.


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